Multibillion-dollar deal will add two satellites to Milstar

Multibillion-dollar deal will add two satellites to Milstar

The Air Force has announced a $2.69 billion contract with Lockheed Martin Corp. to develop two advanced extremely high frequency communications satellites and a ground command and control system to further the Defense Department's Milstar program.

The satellites will provide 10 times the capacity of Milstar, a joint satellite system for secure, jam-resistant worldwide communications by high-priority military users, according to an announcement from the Air Force. This will enable the service to transmit tactical military communications such as real-time video, battlefield maps and targeting data.

Lockheed Martin is the prime integrator and will develop elements of the satellites, as well as the ground command and control systems. TRW Inc. will also work on the development of the satellites, according to the release.

The first of the satellites will be launched in 2006.

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